2023 SAG Award Winners

Capital Area Regional Planning Commission

Project Goal

Our goal is to ensure equitable access to trees and their associated benefits. To do this, we need a location-specific tool to evaluate where trees are most needed. Therefore, we are building a weighted prioritization index for Dane County.
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Learn more about our application: Site 1 | Site 2

Business Problem Solved

Identify the communities, neighborhoods or census blocks in the county that could most benefit from increased or better managed tree canopy, based on community characteristics. Community characteristics could include factors such as public health conditions, socioeconomic status, historic or current tree cover, impervious area, conservation opportunities, flood risk, population vulnerability, recent loss of tree cover, or projected heat impacts.

Quantify the expected benefits of tree planting and maintenance to those communities related to factors such as flood risk reduction, degrees of cooling during extreme heat events, impacts on air and particulate pollution, impacts on chronic health conditions (such as asthma), wildlife/songbird habitat, expanded recreational opportunities, or cost savings that could result from tree planting or maintenance.

Technology Implemented

ArcGIS Online, Open Data Portal

Development Team Biography

Partnership is fundamental to achieving success. Increasing tree canopy across the county is a
multifaceted challenge, requiring diverse expertise and action by both the private and public
sector. Consequently, the Tree Canopy Working Group can only be successful by
collaboratively working with local stakeholders, including private citizens, nonprofits, and
government. This includes working directly with local individuals and groups to share resources,
best practices, and encourage increased attention toward tree maintenance, preservation, and
tree planting. The Working Group will work collectively to co-develop goals with local experts,
recognizing neighborhood opportunities, needs, and constraints.